“She was already thinking of herself
as a kind of expatriate…not
smothered by what she believed to
be America’s puritanical and
materialistic culture, which she
had little patience for.
She saw herself more a European
soul, in tune with the thinkers and
artists she felt expressed her
tragic, romantic, freethinking view
of life.”
– Vicky Christina Barcelona

Photo taken as we walked up the stairs to enter historical, old Genève. August 2012.

Our transatlantic flight left Minneapolis on Friday, August 10th. My parents had flown in fifty minutes before from Tucson, Arizona. We were doing a swap. My mom was staying here in Minneapolis helping my husband look after the kids while my dad and I were boarding a non-stop flight to Amsterdam at approximately 7:30 pm.  I could hardly wait.

Thankfully their flight was on-time, always a concern with a short connection, and I promptly gave my mom a hug and kiss hello and goodbye as she headed to the baggage claim where my husband and kids were anxiously awaiting the arrival of their beloved grandma. My dad and I proceeded to board a completely full flight and off we were on our latest adventure.

We landed in Amsterdam about eight hours later to an overcast summer sky. I had managed to sleep only a few hours as I’m not good at sleeping sitting up (is anyone?). I find overseas flights rather unpleasant except for the free flowing wine and energetic anticipation of landing in faraway land.

Our connection was short and an hour and a half later we were touching ground in Geneva where we would meet our British guide Mark from Simply Savoie and set off for a six day hiking tour of the French Alps.  Our journey was about to begin…..

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.
– Harriet Tubman

Photo taken along the Tour de la Vanoise….

The two other hikers in our group were coming in from England….yet five hours later. We had no idea there would be such a delay. Instead, we imagined getting into the car and heading straight towards the French Alps to a little mountain town called Pralognan-la-Vanoise where we would sip delicious wine, munch on savory fromage and then indulge in a rich, heavy french meal before heading off to much-needed sleep.

Desperately craving sleep, at that moment, a helpful saying told to me years ago by a fellow traveler in Germany rang clearly in my head.

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. 

I hadn’t been to Geneva in years. Instead of sitting around the airport for five long, grueling, jet lagged hours, why not hop the train and head into the center of town and explore? 

And that is what we did. 18 euros later we had a aller-retour ticket to the center of town. Stepping out of the train station and gaining our bearings, it looked impressive. Old Parisian-styled buildings. Outdoor cafes. All the charm and ambiance of a typical European town. I felt at ease. I love Europe. I love this kind of town.

Yet, ten minutes later, we found the true heart and soul of Geneva: We discovered Old Genève, and my being and camera were suddenly constantly moving….

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

It was an unexpected surprise. Sometimes those are the best of all.

Stay tuned…day one of our hike coming up next!


    1. That picture is one taken along my hike. More to come, I promise! It was absolutely beautiful hiking.

      I really want to hike in India some day too. There are lots of beautiful mountains there and I LOVE Indian food. It is amazing! Any good recommendations on places to see? I wanted to go to Kashmir but heard it is a bit dangerous…true? I also want to do the Source of the Ganges hike. THere are lots of lovely places I want to see in your country!

      1. 1) Yes , there are lots of mountains to hike . but i don’t know about that , Sorry , but i can suggest the person { Mukesh Modi , GUJARAT ,INDIA } , i used to know by his articles . he is having this kind of experience in a broad sense . here is the ID , mukesh2771@gmail.com . it will really help you .and my ID is nirav.is.reading@gmail.com .

        2) Indian food , just out of the world ( Pure Veg. only )

        3) Kashmir is bit dangerous nowadays , but could be gone there , as they are heavily depended on Tourists .

        4) & the source of the ganges = Gangotri ( in our language ) , it might be located in Mansarovar . so it needs the permission of CHINA !

  1. I was in Geneva over 10 years ago – very short visit in winter – I think it would be lovely to go back in the summer. Can’t wait to hear the whole story.

  2. Old Geneve is gorgeous. I’ve worked several trade shows in the city. Great way to start your adventure!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.